The teenager was diagnosed with a genetic disorder and his mother admits she is unsure whether he will ever stop growing.
The 19 year old Broc Brown from Michigan is 7ft 8 inches now. He, who was officially the world’s tallest teen mentioned in Guinness Book of World record before becoming too old for the 18-and-under classification, is growing at the rate of 6 inches per year and can even surpass the world’s tallest man Sultan Kosen, at 8ft 2ins.
When he was just 2 months old, he was 3 feet tall and even in kindergarten he was around 5ft 2 ins. When he got into middle school he was around 6ft tall and by high school he was 7ft tall. His mother said, “It’s a genetic disorder and there’s nothing that can stop him from growing.”
He was diagnosed with Sotos Syndrome, known as cerebral gigantism, when he was just 5 and his mother, Darci Moss Elliot was told that he would not outlive his teenage years.
The condition affects one in every 15,000 people. Broc also suffers from learning difficulties, strain on his heart, curvature of the spine and narrowing of the spinal cord. But doctors are now confident that he will have a normal life in spite of his health problems.
Darci said: “He has ADHD and intermittent explosive disorder. When he gets mad, he’s mad. It wouldn’t take him two seconds to pop a hole in the wall – it could be very dangerous if he wasn’t on medication. But overall he is a big softie. His heart is as big as his body.”
He was also born with one kidney so is unable to take painkillers in spite of suffering constantly with his back. Broc said: “It kind of feels like a big tennis racket has gone through my back. I do stuff to stop it hurting and it makes me feel like there’s a needle gone through it – it’s hard to deal with. I just wish the doctors could do something to help my pain.”
Broc with his mother recently traveled 1,000 miles from their home to the Arkansas Children’s Centre to meet with Sotos expert Dr Bradley Schaefer.
Dr Schaefer said: “Broc is easily the tallest man I have ever seen. Unfortunately he will always have to deal with some form of pain but I believe that he will now have a regular life span.”
Broc said with delight, “It’s the best thing I could have heard. I’m so happy that I will live for a long time.”
Darci says that his health problem haven’t just affected him. She said, “When you have a five-year-old who has hurt themselves and they come running at you, you pick them up, I would carry him around when he was half the size of me so I have a lot of back problems.”
The financial implications have been hard for the family to bear. Broc has to have his clothes and shoes specially made and the socks to cover his huge size 28 feet cost £14 a pair. As well as his custom-made, he has a specialist chair that cost £750 and a specially made 8 ft jumbo bed. The local helped raise £7500 through a fund-raiser and they used it buying socks, shoes and clothes. Darci said, “It didn’t last long, we had a lot of outfits but within a year he was out of them and it was time to do it all again.”
Broc was popular at school but his condition meant him missing a lot of lessons. His old teacher Brenda Cavanaugh said: “The kids really look up to him. No pun intended.”
However, he and his mum is looking forward to their long future together. Broc wished to have his own job and said that he would like to work for a sporting goods store or something like that as a cashier or else.
Darci said, “I don’t ever want to push him in to doing something he doesn’t want to do. I just hope he has a good life and is happy with everything he ever does.”